Post-transplant malignancies in alcoholic liver disease

Akash Singh, Arka De, Virendra Singh


Post-transplant malignancy is emerging as an important cause of mortality in patients with cirrhosis undergoing liver transplant (LT). However, establishing the exact relationship between the two needs further evaluation. It has been observed that approximately 30% deaths after 10 years of hepatic transplantation occur due to de novo malignancies. Various known risk factors include immunosuppression, age of patient, alcoholic liver disease (ALD) or primary sclerosing cholangitis, smoking, and oncogenic viral infections. There is scanty literature on the post-transplant malignancy risk in patients with alcoholic cirrhosis. The current evidence suggests a particularly increased risk of oropharyngeal and lung cancers in patients transplanted for ALD. Abstinence from alcohol, smoking and other tobacco-containing products along with optimization of immunosuppression are paramount for decreasing the risk of post-transplant malignancies.